Presidential and Board of Regents Awards (2011)

Carlo DiClemente | Lynnda Dahlquist | Connie Pierson | Michelle Howell | Myrle H. Combst | E. Michael Richards
Bruce J. Walz | Janet McGlynn | Delana Gregg | Joyce Riley

Presidential Research Professor


Carlo DiClemente
Professor, Psychology
Presidential Research Professor, 2011-2014

Carlo DiClemente has made a tremendous contribution to the Department of Psychology since joining UMBC in 1995, and he has an even longer history of contributions to the profession. His work has been honored by the Maryland Psychological Association, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the American Society on Addiction Medicine, and by his peers in the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences for the first Lipitz Professorship, an endowment created to recognize distinguished teaching and research.

DiClemente is known internationally for his transtheoretical model of behavior change, and his research on addictive behavior has appeared in over 150 peer-reviewed journals and other scholarly outlets, including the American Journal of Psychiatry, the Journal of Clinical Psychology and Addiction.

Not only is his theoretical and empirical research well-respected, but it is noteworthy for its contribution directly to the field of substance abuse and health behavior change. Fellow scholars and public health organizations around the world seek him out to speak on smoking, alcoholism, AIDS, obesity and other health risks.

With a very strong teaching record with both formal coursework and research supervision, he teaches an upper-level undergraduate course on addiction and classes on clinical interventions, specialty topics and core areas in the graduate program.

DiClemente earned his A.B. In Philosophy and Social Sciences from St. Mary’s University, his S.T.B. in Theology from the Gregorian University, his M.A. in Personality and Social Psychology from the New School for Social Research and his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Rhode Island.

back to top

Presidential Teaching Professor


Lynnda Dahlquist
Professor, Psychology
Presidential Teaching Professor, 2011-2014

Lynnda Dahlquist joined UMBC’s psychology department in 1996. In addition to her exemplary teaching, she is a productive, well-funded and nationally recognized researcher in pediatric psychology.

She leads traditional and independent studies courses at the undergraduate and graduate level, including the extremely popular general education course, Abnormal Psychology, as well as undergraduate and graduate courses in her specialty area, child clinical psychology. She goes beyond departmental expectations for large classes and requires students to complete writing assignments, on which she provides valuable feedback.

Her talents extend from the classroom to the laboratory. Her undergraduate students earn Undergraduate Research Awards and present their work at Undergraduate Research and Creative Achievement Day (URCAD). Her graduate students receive recognition of their work at professional conferences and are co-authors or first authors of many peer-reviewed articles. She works with graduate students as they complete their master’s theses and dissertations, and the number of students who have earned their degrees with her is among the highest in the department. Under her guidance, 19 students have earned Ph.D.s and 16 have earned M.A.s. Her graduate students have obtained competitive internships, postdoctoral fellowships and academic medicine faculty appointments at prestigious children’s hospitals throughout the country.

More than 50 of Dahlquist’s peer-reviewed articles have appeared in journals including the Journal of Pediatric Psychology, the Journal of Pain and Health Psychology.

Dahlquist earned her B.A. in German and B.A. in Psychology from St. Olaf College, her M.S. in Clinical Psychology from Purdue University and her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Purdue University.

back to top

Presidential Distinguished Staff Award


Connie Pierson
Assistant Director, Office of Institutional Research
Presidential Distinguished Staff Award, Professional Staff, 2011-2012

Since joining UMBC in 1999, Connie Pierson has made significant and sustaining contributions to the university through her commitment to the institution, dedication to customer service and exceptional analytic skills. She interacts with nearly every office on campus and provides critical reports and analysis to senior staff, including the president and provost, on peer comparisons, faculty workload and other performance indicators.

Pierson also works with University System of Maryland (USM) and Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC) staff to ensure the completion of mandated state and federal reporting. Some of her more recent projects include examining the effects of change to online placement testing, modeling tuition revenue and generating enrollment projections, and she works closely with her colleagues in the Office of Institutional Research (OIR) to transition to reports using the new student information system and data warehouse.

When the former OIR director resigned, Pierson took on the responsibilities as acting director and served on the search committee for a new director while simultaneously completing all mandated reporting and ad-hoc analyses requested.

Pierson has served numerous terms on the Professional Staff Senate in the roles of representative, secretary and vice president. She currently volunteers as secretary for the Maryland Association for Institutional Research, as well as the UMB-UMBC Chapter of the National Society of Phi Kappa Phi.

She is known for her poise, professionalism and positivity, and colleagues admire her intellectual curiosity, statistical expertise, clear thinking and sense of humor.

Pierson earned her B.A. in Economics and B.A. in Sociology from UMBC, her M.A. in Applied Sociology from the University of Maryland Graduate School Baltimore and her Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Maryland College Park.

back to top


Michelle Howell
Executive Administrative Assistant II, Erickson School
Presidential Distinguished Staff Award, Non-Exempt Staff, 2011-2012

Since joining UMBC in 2001, Michelle Howell has exercised great dedication to the university. In addition to her duties as program management specialist for the Erickson School, she shares responsibilities for business-related issues and provides executive-level support for the dean, the graduate program director, the faculty and part-time lecturers.

The Erickson School’s undergraduate, graduate and executive education programs continue to expand, and Howell has been an instrumental part of that growth. She helps advise students on curriculum requirements, course selection, registration procedures and transfer of credit. She recommends waiver of requirements, substitutions and exemptions, assists with the development of course schedules and materials and coordinates all classroom requests.

Howell’s attention to detail and desire to improve performance led her to seek out training and master a wide set of skills, including student administration, the graduate application summary, student financials, UMBC advising practices, PeopleSoft and UMBC time entry and payroll processes.

She is known for taking great care in completing tasks and tying loose ends for students, faculty and university offices. She possesses an ability and willingness to handle multiple priorities and takes initiative well outside the parameters of her job to help support the Erickson School, and to make sure students and the university at large are well served.

back to top

Board of Regents’ Award for Exceptional Contributions to
the Mission of UMBC and the Division of Student Affairs


Myrle H. Combs
Business Services Specialist, Student Affairs Business Services Center
USM Board of Regents’ Award for Exceptional Contributions to the Mission of UMBC and the Division of Student Affairs, 2010-2011

In her 36 years at UMBC, Myrle Combs has worked tirelessly to advance departmental missions, enrich student life and share her advice and insight. She has dedicated her career in service to the missions of the Student Affairs Division and to UMBC.

Combs worked as office supervisor for the Department of Biological Sciences, then moved to the Career Services Center as job referral coordinator and program management specialist. In 1999, she joined the staff of the University Center/The Commons. In 2002, she received the UMBC Student Affairs Outstanding Staff Award.

When The Commons opened in 2004, she moved into the new building where her skills in financial management were needed most and took on the role of business services specialist. Combs handles daily payroll and supports the financial management of several university offices, including the Office of Student Life, the Student Events Board (SEB) and more than 200 student organizations.

Combs is committed to the success and effective financial management of the many programs and activities she supports. She single-handedly automated the accounting systems for the University Center and the Student Government Association.

Her expertise and resourcefulness is a priceless resource to colleagues. She teaches staff and administrators how to manage their accounts and instructs student leaders of campus organizations how to handle their funds effectively. When UMBC switched to new financial management software, Combs mastered it quickly and volunteered to assist fellow staff members.

Combs has studied financial economics and accounting at UMBC and business accounting at the Community College of Baltimore County.

back to top

Board of Regents’ Award for Excellence in Research


E. Michael Richards
Professor and Chair, Department of Music
USM Board of Regents’ Award for Excellence in Research , 2010-2011

Since joining UMBC in 2001, E. Michael Richards has made renowned contributions to contemporary music through his research and creative accomplishments. He is responsible for extending the sound repertoire for the clarinet by conceptualizing and producing new sounds for the instrument and devising a notational system with which composers can express them.

He has premiered more than 150 new compositions by some of the world’s leading composers for the clarinet, many of which were written for him, and he has performed at festivals and universities throughout the U.S., Italy and Japan. Two of his nine published CDs have appeared since 2007, and he has completed recordings for six more, two of which are scheduled for publication this year.

He has produced books, pedagogical materials and an archive of recorded performances, all of which build upon his 20 years as a performer and scholar. He is regarded as an international leader of considerable stature and will continue to influence the direction of new music for the clarinet.

Richards has also conducted a scholarly exploration of modern music in Japan with Kazuko Tanosaki. They organized a series of six symposia on the connections between tradition and innovation in contemporary Japanese and Asian music.

Richards earned his B.Mus. in Clarinet Performance from the New England Conservatory of Music, his M.Mus. in Clarinet Performance from the Yale University School of Music, his A.M. in Musicology from Smith College and his Ph.D. in Theoretical Studies and Conducting from the University of California, San Diego.

back to top

Board of Regents’ Award for Excellence in Public Service


Bruce J. Walz
Professor and Chair, Department of Emergency Health Services
USM Board of Regents’ Award for Excellence in Public Service

As a leader in emergency medical services (EMS) education, Bruce J. Walz has played a crucial role in the advancement and improvement of medical response initiatives across the country.

He joined the faculty in 1987, and serves as professor and chair of the Department of Emergency Health Services, as well as adjunct professor of gerontology and chair of the Faculty Senate’s Academic Planning and Budget Committee. The department, under his leadership, prepares emergency health services professionals in Maryland and throughout the nation.

Walz has been instrumental in developing national standards for the education of emergency medical services personnel and has worked to implement those standards nationwide. He is a past president of the National Association of EMS Educators and long-standing member of the Board of Directors of Advocates for Emergency Medical Services, a national consortium of EMS organizations, and served as president, 2007-2010. He raised awareness among federal policymakers of the need for renewed federal focus on EMS and has played a major role in the development of federal legislation to strengthen and improve the delivery of EMS across the country.

In Maryland, he is a founding member of the state’s National Disaster Medical Assistance Team, a nationally registered EMT paramedic, leader in the Mount Airy Volunteer Fire Company and active with many state and local committees and organizations.

Walz earned his B.A. in Biology from Western Maryland College (now McDaniel College), his M.A. in Human Sciences from Hood College and his Ph.D. in Agriculture and Extension Education from the University of Maryland College Park.

back to top

UMBC President’s Commission for Women Achievement Award


Janet McGlynn
Director of Communication and Outreach, Office of Undergraduate Education
UMBC President’s Commission for Women Achievement Award, 2011-2012

Since joining UMBC in 2001, Janet McGlynn has been a champion of student research and an advocate for women’s issues on campus. She is responsible for several campus-wide undergraduate research programs, including the Undergraduate Research and Creative Achievement Day (URCAD), the Undergraduate Research Awards (URA) and the UMBC Review. She also promotes summer research opportunities and travel grants to support students presenting research at national conferences.

Her hard work and dedication has made URCAD a unique opportunity for all undergraduates to showcase their talents and develop as professionals in their fields. Around 250 students participated and about 2,000 people attended URCAD in 2010. Outside of research, McGlynn participates in committees, planning and activities that support student success, retention and graduation. She teaches a section of Introduction to an Honors University (IHU) designed to help new students make the transition to college academics. She works with the committee that selects the book read by incoming students each year as a part of the New Student Book Experience.

She encourages members of Women in Learning and Leadership (WILL) to participate in URCAD, recognizing it as an excellent opportunity for undergraduate women, particularly those in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields, to gain valuable experience. She also serves on the Women’s Center Advisory Board and is involved in women’s issues on campus.

McGlynn earned her B.A. in Natural Sciences and Masters in Administrative Science from Johns Hopkins University.

back to top


Delana Gregg
Assistant Director, Sondheim Public Affairs Scholars
UMBC President’s Commission for Women Achievement Award, 2011-2012

Since joining UMBC in 2002, Delana Gregg has always focused on community. She has worked tirelessly to connect Sondheim students to the campus and greater Baltimore communities, has encouraged students to build their own tightly-knit learning community and is known as a strong advocate for women’s issues on campus.

Drawing on her roots as a Peace Corps volunteer in Lithuania and as a Shriver Peaceworker Fellow at UMBC, Gregg puts service at the center of her role as administrator. She has elevated the position to include core values of social justice, and she challenges students to make the world a better place. She meets one-on-one with students to discuss race, gender and class dynamics as they relate to service projects and the people they serve. She manages relationships with dozens of community partners, including College Gardens, Health Leads and the Shriver Center, to ensure they have the critical volunteer support they need to operate in Baltimore.

While recruiting for UMBC and the Sondheim program, she advises high school juniors and seniors on scholarship resources, gives advice on college preparation, and guides new students as they enroll for their first semester of classes. Beyond administering the program and serving as a mentor to students, Gregg is always engaged in the UMBC community and volunteers behind the scenes for a variety of campus efforts. Gregg was also a member and co-chair of the President’s Commission for Women and the President of the Professional Staff Senate.

She is committed to advocacy for women and is a member of the Women’s Center Advisory Board. She has a keen eye for physical accessibility and safety on campus, the need to support working women with flexible scheduling, and she possesses a deep understanding of gender-based discrimination that makes her a valuable resource for a variety of committees and boards.

Gregg earned her B.A. in English from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and her M.A. in Instructional Systems Development from UMBC.

back to top

Jakubik Family Endowment Staff Award


Joyce Riley
Associate Director, Health Administration and Policy Program
Jakubik Family Endowment Staff Award, 2011-2012

In her 32 years at UMBC, Joyce Riley has made exceptional contributions to the campus community and the Health Administration and Policy Program (HAPP). She demonstrates excellence in teaching, innovative advisement and mentoring of undergraduates and is instrumental in the development of new programs.

Riley has directed the HAPP internship program, widely regarded as the heart of HAPP, since 1980. She ensures that students receive rich, experiential learning opportunities from internships that would be impossible to duplicate in a classroom. Through her deep understanding and knowledge of their interests and abilities, Riley is able to help students obtain educationally rewarding placement. Over 1,100 students have completed internships under her guidance.

Riley teaches the gateway class for HAPP, a course known for being rigorous, and she has earned a reputation for being well-organized and fair. She updates her curriculum regularly, which is no small feat in the rapidly changing field of health.

Riley also advises, or supervises the advising, of all HAPP majors. She makes herself available to students who aspire to careers in health for both formal and informal mentoring. Her advising frequently extends beyond academics for students who seek out her compassion, wisdom and advice on personal issues.

Instrumental in the creation of the campus-wide UMBC International Field Research Program, Riley’s enduring dedication has allowed over 100 students to travel to Switzerland, England, Scotland, Portugal, Denmark and Italy, creating opportunities and experiences that routinely change the lives of students and often encourage them to seek graduate education and careers in research.

Colleagues admire her inspiring dedication to students, and she is considered the heart, head, backbone, hands and feet of HAPP since its early days.

Riley earned her B.S. in Nursing from the University of Maryland Baltimore, and she earned her M.A. in Applied Sociology, with a focus on health and aging, from UMBC.

back to top

View Previous Presidential Faculty and Staff Award Recipients
2003 | 2004 |2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013